The Swarovski Company has been making the finest lead glass crystal for over 100 years. It began in 1895 when Daniel Swarovski founded Swarovski Crystal with the assistance of Franz Weis and Armand Kossmann. Daniel worked for long years on a precision faceting machine while he worked for his father as a glass and crystal cutter. He was ready to register a patent in 1895. The combination of fine crystal and precision cutting made the Swarovski name famous. The keys to their success were Daniel’s patented precision crystal cutting machine and the their demand for the very finest quality crystal available.
By 1913 the Swarovski Company built their own production plant. It took the years between 1908 and 1913 to perfect the formula for flawless crystal. This was done primarily by Daniel's sons Wilhelm, Friedrich, and Alfred who followed in their father’s footsteps. These crystals were made into flawlessly cut jewelry stones. Their goal was to create the very finest crystal in the world and to meet production demands that were growing every year.
These stone caused quite a stir in the fashion world of the 1920s and demand grew worldwide. The “flapper” fashion for fringed and crystal creations brought about another patent. A ribbon of fabric studded with crystals ready to sewn onto any garment. Fashion designers like Chanel and Schaparelli made costume jewelry not just acceptable but a fashion requirement for every fashion conscious woman of the time.
Aurora Borealis was the next innovation in the crystal fashion world in 1956. Crystals were coated with an almost imperceptible layer of metal to give the stone a rainbow sparkle. Manfred Swarovski, Daniel's grandson worked with Christian Dior to perfect this process.
1977 saw the introduction of a new material and Swarovski branches out to create a new synthetic stone. Cubic Zirconia is the imitation stone that most closely matches a natural stone in sparkle and brilliance. That produced a revolution in the jewelry business and CZ jewelry was all the rage. Anyone could now wear these diamond simulants.
In 1995 Swarovski celebrated 100 years of the world’s finest crystal and opened the “Swarovski Kristallwelten” a manmade grotto filled with the most magnificent crystal creations. Designs from the most celebrated artists were created and put on display in a specially designed “Crystal World” in Wattens, Austria.
Crystal Tattoos were announced in 1999 and now they could be attached directly on the body, no fabric required. Demand for these gems as well as all the other Swarovski products is growing steadily.